Of the eight teams that reached the Western Conference playoffs last season, six of them had at least one player among the NBA’s top-20 in win shares. The two playoff teams that did not have a player among the top 20 were Memphis, with stars Marc Gasol, Mike Conley and Zach Randolph, and San Antonio, who boasts the famed star quartet of Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, Manu Ginobili and Kawhi Leonard. Obtaining, maintaining and sustaining a roster with All-Star level talent
For the second night in a row, a top-dollar superstar disappointed. James Harden double-doubled, but when you pay more than 20% of the salary cap for any player, only a massive line is good value in daily fantasy.
The Memphis Grizzlies begin the 2014-15 season with high hopes. With the core in place and an exceptionally deep bench, making a return to the Western Conference finals – or further – is the goal. Last season, the injury bug bit the Grizzlies. Multiple key players missed extended time, and the Grizzlies couldn’t separate themselves in the West as a result. Ending the season contemplating what could have been is unpleasant, and it’s a situation the Grizzlies don’t care to find themselves
If you’re wondering where Derrick Rose ranks among the NBA’s top 10 point guards, he doesn’t. Neither does Deron Williams. Or Kemba Walker. Or Kyle Lowry. Point guard is the most demanding position in the NBA. And in ranking the top floor generals, we have demanding criteria. Is your favorite point guard an All-Star? How long has he been at that level? Is his current career track pointing upward or downward? Where does he rank among scorers at the position? Assists? Does he
In an interview in April 2013, Kevin Durant told Sports Illustrated he was tired of finishing second. Durant was the second player taken in the 2007 draft. He lost in the NBA Finals in 2012. He finished second in MVP voting four times. This past season, Durant took a huge step forward when he won his first MVP award, finally emerging from the shadow cast by LeBron James. But if he doesn’t win an NBA championship in the next two years with
BROOKLYN — One season after the Jason Kidd experiment failed in bizarre fashion, the Brooklyn Nets introduced the man the franchise should have hired in the first place. Lionel Hollins isn’t here for power struggles, whether they be with staff members, GM Billy King or ownership. He’s here to coach. “I’m a basketball coach,” Hollins said. “I don’t want to do Billy’s job. I don’t want to do anybody else’s job in the organization but the one that I’m hired to do
Day two of the 2014 Brazil World Cup may have had the most anticipated match of the group round. Spain, winners of the 2010 World Cup, had been selected to Group B with Chile, Australia and the Netherlands—the team they defeated 1-0 in the finals four years ago. That match was 0-0 through 90 minutes before the Spanish got the go-ahead goal in extra time. Their first match in this year’s World Cup? A rematch of the 2010 final against Netherlands. This matchup
A certain someone made a bold prediction prior to the season that the Memphis Grizzlies would be facing the Indiana Pacers in the NBA finals. OK, it was me. Which means you can guess which way my prediction is going to go, for better or worse. You do not get to divorce yourself from your preseason predictions unless something crazy happens along the way, such as a team trading away its best player of something similar (that was the case last